Living in gorgeous Marin County is a reason to care about our environment year round, but Earth Day (April 22) is a perfect opportunity to give Mother Nature a little extra love and share some teachable moments with our kids. Marinites have supported Earth Day since 1970 when it was first established to honor the environment. Here are a few ways to participate this weekend, whether it’s picking up trash, restoring a threatened space or just appreciating the natural beauty of our county.
Take part in a cleanup
One of the most fulfilling and simple ways to beautify our parks and open spaces is to simply gather up garbage and other unwanted rubbish. Marin County Parks is hosting an event on April 21 at Hal Brown Park at Creekside, located across the street from Marin General Hospital, to clean up litter from the Corte Madera Creek watershed and restore the habitat at the park.
California State Parks is hosting its 20th annual China Camp event on April 21, involving invasive plant removal, fence repair, trail grooming and other ecosystem improvements, followed by lunch and a hike. Register in advance.
Go for a hike
With Spring in full bloom and near-perfect temperatures in store, Earth Day might be the perfect day for a hike. Our field guide shows you where to find Marin’s best and most stunning wildflowers along some of our favorite trails, ranging from the Dipsea Trail to the Old Railroad Grade Trail.
Restore a protected habitat
On April 21, head out to the throwback town of Bolinas, where Marin County Parks is hosting an ecological restoration event at Kent Island in the Bolinas Lagoon. Kids as young as five can join in (be forewarned that there is a short rowboat ride out to the island and back). Participants must sign up in advance.
Head over to McNear’s Beach for Art in the Park on April 21, and draw inspiration from the natural canvas of the San Pablo Bay to create your own painting. On April 22, take part in the Annual Earth Day Celebration at Stinson Beach to make ephemeral art, such as rock sculptures and sand globes, using natural materials from the beach and with the help of more than a dozen collaborating artists. There will also be a beach cleanup and creek restoration activities. All ages welcome at both events.
WildCare is hosting Family Nature Day on April 21 at Stafford Lake Park. Along with cruising the bike paths, kids of all ages can catch and release frogs and newts, go on a naturalist-led hike and take part in a scavenger hunt. The WildCare Nature Van and ambassador animals will be on hand as well.
Become a citizen scientist
The weekend following Earth Day, several Marin organizations are hosting bioblitzes — events during which citizens document what they find in nature and upload the data to iNaturalist — as part of the global City Nature Challenge organized by the California Academy of Sciences. On April 30, residents of Marin are invited to participate in one of several bioblitzes held at Ring Mountain, Lake Lagunitas, China Camp and Tamarancho, with the latter two events done on mountain bikes.